China: May 11, 2005


Taiwan arrested 17 military officers and civilians as suspects in a Chinese spy ring. The accused were apparently collecting information on what Taiwan knew about Chinese military capabilities. China's espionage efforts are widespread, using thousands of part-time volunteers, or students and businessmen coerced to "serve the state." As more foreigners become aware of this practice, and take a closer look at the activities of local Chinese, more espionage is discovered. Often it's as simple as graduate students or businessmen walking off with bits (or bunches) of confidential information. European and American universities and businesses have become alarmed at the extent of this theft, and don't know what to do to stop it. China is a major trading partner with the world's major industrial powers, and a major supplier of students to universities in these countries. Not all Chinese overseas are spies, but so many are, and an increasing number are being arrested and prosecuted. The Chinese government denies everything, and the espionage operation continues.


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